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Paul Furlong pleased with FA Youth Cup win

PAUL Furlong is relishing a 'mouthwatering' tie with Tottenham Hotspur at Loftus Road after guiding QPR Under-18s into the FA Youth Cup Fourth Round on Tuesday night.

Rangers ran out 3-1 winners over Swindon Town at the Country Ground, with second-half goals from Josh Bowler and Romeo Akinola sealing the R’s passage.

Furlong shared his delight the final whistle, telling www.qpr.co.uk: “We spoke to the boys at half-time about being technically better, about our pass appreciation, and I thought we did that in the second half.

“We were much better and we’re very pleased with the result.”

Kingsley Eshun’s opener gave Rangers the lead, albeit not for long after Christian Frimpong’s header hauled Town level before the break.

But it was to be visitors’ night in Wiltshire, as Bowler’s penalty and Akinola’s sublime free-kick soon after clinched a convincing victory.

“Josh showed good composure with the penalty,” Furlong said. “He’s been working on them for the last week or so and, as it happens, he’s missed a few in training. But he’s a confident lad and I knew he’d put it away.

“Kingsley’s scored his first goal as well which was great. We’re really pleased with the lads.

“At the end players were going down with cramp and we had to substitute players. But that’s the game; I thought we managed it really well.”

Tuesday night’s victory provided the perfect ending to 2016, and Furlong admits the win provided a welcome distraction from their league affairs.

“We do what we do to be involved in games like this, at grounds like this, on nights like this,” he said.

“For the last 10 days we’ve tried to give the boys that First Team experience in terms of watching the opposition and gearing our tactics towards Swindon.

“Normally week to week and in our league fixtures it’s about development, but this was definitely a game we wanted to win.”

The young R’s can now look forward to a meeting with Spurs in the next round.

After taking a much-fancied Manchester United side to extra-time in the competition last season, Furlong is relishing another testing challenge in W12.

“We’ve got a home tie to look forward to Loftus Road which is great,” he said.

“It’s a mouthwatering tie. We’ve played Spurs many times in friendlies and they’re a good football team, we know that. It’s those sorts of clubs and players we’re trying to aspire to.

“I remember when we played Man Utd last season and not too many people outside of our dressing room gave us a hope. But we did really well and took them close, so let’s see what we can do this time.”

Normally week to week and in our league fixtures it’s about development, but this was definitely a game we wanted to win.

Paul Furlong